Updates from Betfair, Supergroup and easyJet

Adrian Holliday
savings, tax, stockmarket, pensions, cash, investment FTSE 100
savings, tax, stockmarket, pensions, cash, investment FTSE 100

More optimism for the FTSE 100 yesterday, up more than 44 points, or 0.65%, to 6,873.5. Close to a 14-year high. Ashtead Group was the biggest climber, up 3.6% to 1022p with CRH and Barclays following, up 3.43% (to 1446p) and 2.59% (to 228.10p) respectively. However there was a 5.79% fall for Hargreaves Lansdown, reducing the value of shares to 1073p as investors worried about full-year profits falling short.

Meanwhile little change for the Dow Jones, up just 10 points to 17,078.2 though tech stocks, including Apple, came under pressure.

We start with a quick trip to the bookies. Betfair's revenues climb 30% in the last quarter driven by the World Cup. World Cup revenue came in at £15.9 million. Revenue excluding the World Cup climbs 12%, including 17% growth in sustainable markets.

EBITDA is up 39% to £34.5 million while mobile revenue climb 162% with the channel contributing 70% to Sportsbook revenues. Customer acquisition climbs 181% and the number of active customers lifts 48% claims Betfair.

"We are focused," says boss Breon Corcoran, "on a number of challenges, including our early stage investments in New Jersey online casino and Italy, and uncertainty remains in a number of unregulated markets."

Next, retailer SuperGroup. Q1 sees double-digit sales growth across all its main channels resulting in total sales being upped 15.9% to £87m says the company. Total Retail sales in the period were up 13.6% at £60.4m.

However like-for-like sales in the quarter were down 3.7% against 8.5% from the first quarter last year. Like-for-like performance was affected shortages of key spring summer lines and a highly competitive market place says the company.

"The order book," says boss Julian Dunkerton, "for autumn/winter 2014/15 is in line with our expectations and continues to demonstrate the global appeal of the brand."

Lastly, easyJet has released passenger stats for August. In total, passenger numbers rise 8.4% to 6,612,075 while the load factor climbs 1.4pp. On a rolling basis the passenger numbers climb 6.4% to 64,339,243.

In July easyJet saw an 8% climb in passenger traffic, beating Ryanair. The company has been boosted by allocated seating, helping draw in additional business class customers.

easyJet had its Buy rating re-stated by Numis Securities recently as well as Deutsche Bank.

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